Scripture Text: 3 John
Memory Verse: “Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.” 3 John 1:2
Lesson Aim: To reinforce the concepts and tools necessary to prosper spiritually.
God wants you to prosper spiritually! When God called you, He made an investment into your life; just as one does with a financial investment. His expectation is for you to grow, advance, and expand your border. Spiritual prosperity points to being successful in spiritual things, i.e., having a thriving relationship with God.
But how does the believer prosper spiritually? Jesus is the source of our spiritual prosperity. He is the author and finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2). In the literal sense, an author is a creator and has the authority to change the character of his making. We must look to him because the potential for growth is maximized through His supernatural grace and anointing.
Our Author uses the tools and concepts addressed in the “Strengthening Your Walk” lesson series to change us and fashion us to become the person He wants us to be. Let’s review some of them.
In order to be spiritually vibrant and grow vigorously, every believer needs to embrace the Word of God. Joshua’s success was totally dependent on his meditating, speaking, and doing God’s Word. It is through the Word of God that we win the battle of the mind. Our thoughts determine our desires, our actions, and our destiny.
Prayer and fasting are two components that will launch believers into sustained spiritual prosperity. Prayer and fasting are not options, but mandatory in order to grow and be sustained.
Praise and worship must not be ignored. These are powerful tools and weapons of spiritual warfare that connect us with God and inflict severe damage on the adversary.
How we value regular fellowship with other believers can make or break the success of a believer. God uses the fellowship of other believers to strengthen us, produce the fruit of the Spirit within us and give us opportunities to show our love for God and others in a practical way.
Empowerment through the Holy Spirit is critical to being spiritually productive, effective and successful. We need the power of God to maximize our spiritual success.
Love and forgiveness. Without these, all we do will profit nothing in the eyes of God. Our motives and our ability to obediently forgive matter far more than the display of all our gifting and achievements. Without love, there is no profit.
Sin is the greatest barrier to a believer maintaining a flourishing relationship with God. Unrepentant sin will create a pit of darkness, hinder the operation of the Holy Spirit and diminish your success. Proverbs 28:13 states, “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.”
First things first! John would say to Gaius, “Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth” (3 John 1:2). We must have the proper priorities in order to pursue holistic prosperity. The spiritual disciplines will help keep us free from sin and lay the groundwork for spiritual growth. Let’s grasp the same desire to prosper and be in health as our inner man (our being) thrives and grows in a vigorous way.
Interact with God’s Word:
- Is it possible to grow spiritually without the primary spiritual disciplines of regularly receiving the Word, prayer, worship, and fellowship?
- Share some benefits you have enjoyed from regularly reading the Word of God.
- Discuss the analogy that Jesus, being the author and finisher of our faith, has the right to change the characters and circumstances of His story. How does that change your perspective of life?
- What can we do to ensure sin does not creep in and bar us from prospering spiritually? Psalm 119:11; 1 John 1:9; 2 Corinthians 7:1; Galatians 5:24; 1 Peter 3:15
- Discuss some practical ways to use spiritual disciplines to prosper our souls.
- What evidence did John the Elder have that Gaius was prospering spiritually? 3 John 1:3-6